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The sacred HOM is definitely NOT a narcotic
by Mrs. Pervin J. Mistry
Atash Niyayesh: "Yasnemcha vahmemcha huberetimcha, ushta-beretimcha, vanta-beretimcha, afrinami, tava Atarsh puthra Ahurahe Mazdao, yesnyo ahi vahmyo, yesnyo buyao vahmyo nmanahu mashyakanam, ushta buyat ahmai naire, yase-thwa badha frayazaite, aesmo-zasto, baresmo-zasto, gao-zasto, havano-zasto."
Meaning: "O fire, the purifier (of all things) pertaining to Ahura Mazda! I praise Thy worship, invocation, good health-giving and friendly gift. (O Fire), thou art worthy of worship and invocation; mayest thou be worthy of worship and invocation in the abodes of men! May there be greatness (or happiness) unto that man who shall always worship thee with fuel Baresman, milk, and mortar in hand." (Khordeh-Avesta-Ba-Mayeni, Ervad Kavasji Edulji Kanga)
Note: The most important teaching of the above paragraph is to WORSHIP Atash, Son of Ahura Mazda, with 3 things: 1) baresman twigs, 2) milk, and 3) mortar in hand. THESE THREE THINGS SIGNIFY THE RITUAL OF IJESHNE! "Baresman" is dry twigs, also called "hom-sali" used in the ceremony of Ijeshne (Yasna). "Hom" is both a sacred plant and also a Yazata. It is said the Yazata Hom has His abode on mountain tops, residing in the plant of same name. It is written in the Avesta (Hom Yasht) that without the sacred "Hom", there is no Immortality (Frashogard). It is also stated in the same Yasht that Hom Yazata, the Giver of Immortality, appeared before Asho Zarathushtra in the "havan gah" and advised Asho Zarathushtra to worship Him (Hom) by pounding Its juice as other "soshyants" before Asho Zarathushtra had done. Vivanghan was the first to worship "Hom"; to him was born Jamshid who had stopped death as long as he worshipped "Hom". Athawyan was the second who worshipped "Hom"; to him was born Faridun who killed Zohak. The third was Thrita to whom were born Urvakhshaya and Kersaspa; Urvakhshaya was the protector of righteousness and Kersaspa killed the man-devouring, horned serpant. The fourth to pound "Hom" was Pourushaspa, and to him was born Asho Zarathushtra! Asho Zarathushtra's miraculous birth is associated with the Hom plant because His Fravashi resided in the stalk of this sacred plant just prior to His birth.
O fellow Zarthushtis, from the above, it is very clear that "Hom" is the Giver of Wisdom and Immortality. To worship Fire, the Son/Energy of Ahura Mazda, or, Ahura Mazda Himself, it is imperative that we perform the Ijeshne ritual with milk, barsam and mortar. If anyone writes anything against the ritual of Hom, or Hom Itself, then, as stated in Hom Yasht, they are deceivers, unrighteous and they work against the Divine Plan to bring about "frashogard"!
"Hom" is definitely not "bhang" or anything even remotely associated with any narcotic or intoxicating substance. Those who write such blasphemous statements should read "The Religious Ceremonies and Customs of the Parsees", J.J.Modi, Bombay, 1986, page 285 (footnote), and realize that "Hom" plant is NOT a narcotic!!! Every religion has its share of infidels! We have ours!
The above paragraph from Atash Niyayesh conclusively proves that the Kingdom of Heaven or Immortality is for those who worship Fire, "Hom" and perform Ijeshne with dedication. "Hom", in Yasna 11.4 is also called "Son of Ahura Mazda", the epithet which is used for Atash! This is due to the fact that just like Fire (Divine Energy), "Hom" also is associated with health, life, immortality and spiritual victory.
Before pronouncing judgement on any of our rituals, we first need to know the rationale behind every one of them.
May we all always worship ATASH, the DIVINE ENERGY of Ahura Mazda, with baresman twigs ("Hom"), milk ("jivam") and mortar! Atha zamyat, atha afrinami.
Pervin J. Mistry